Seeing Past the Shipping

It is Sunday morning and for the first time in weeks, I have a space where I feel like I am allowed to set aside shipping thoughts for a day. I worked all last week and even more yesterday to make sure I had this space. Invoices for next Tuesday’s shipping are printed and sorted. I can’t begin printing postage until tomorrow. All the supplies are either in hand or enroute. I already know what lists I will ship on Thursday. There is email I could manage, but it can wait until Monday morning. I have space to breathe and to contemplate the fact that by the end of this week I will have shipped almost everything. What remains will be international orders and orders containing handbrain screens.

For the first time in months I’m able to contemplate my upcoming trip and make plans for it. Howard and I will be traveling to Europe to take part of the Writing Excuses conference and workshop on a cruise ship in the Baltic sea. I have never been to Europe before. It was always something that was out of reach both financially and in terms of schedule. But the Writing Excuses conference has made it possible. I don’t know what the trip will be like. I expect to see and experience amazing new things. I expect to have to eat unfamiliar foods some of which I’ll like and others I won’t. I expect to get homesick and to come home with my head full of new thoughts. It is going to be a good trip.

Howard’s trip will be more extended than mine. He will stay in Europe after the cruise to tour some castles and then attend WorldCon in Helsinki Finland. I’ll return home to check on the home front, answer emails, manage business things, likely ship some packages, deal with school registration issues, and dozens of other small management tasks. From Helsinki, Howard will fly directly to Indianapolis for GenCon. I will join him there for a week of convention. At the end of that we’ll fly home together and won’t want to leave the house for a good long time. I arrive home the day before my kids begin school and six days before I have to drop my college kid off for her (hopefully) final semester on campus.

I’ve watched these trips coming on the calendar. I’ve felt the pressure of them. I worried that I wouldn’t get enough shipping done before time to go and that I’d then feel guilty for running off on a big trip while backers were waiting for their packages. Now it looks like I won’t have to carry that guilt. I’ve got two weeks of hard work ahead to make sure that I have shipped everything I can possibly ship before departure.